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POSTGAME 5: Top Flight

Top line trio leads Flyers to 3-1 win over Blackhawks

by PhiladelphiaFlyers.com @NHLFlyers / http://www.philadelphiaflyers.com

1. HERE'S WHAT HAPPENED
The Flyers top line dominated the action, factoring into all three goals en route to a 3-1 victory over the Chicago Blackhawks on Thursday night at the Wells Fargo Center.

Claude Giroux kicked off the scoring five minutes into the game off a play that developed in the neutral zone and a great pass from Jakub Voracek. Later in the first, the Flyers captain then made a great play getting the puck to Shayne Gostisbehere, who then threaded a cross-ice pass to Jakub Voracek who buried it past Crawford to make it 2-0.

Sean Couturier scored four minutes into the second period to complete the line's contribution to the game and the Flyers special teams came up big with a 5-on-3 shorthanded penalty kill at the end of the frame to keep it a two-goal game.

Defenseman Connor Murphy scored the lone Blackhawks goal to break up Brian Elliott's shutout bid. Elliott made 38 saves, while Corey Crawford stopped 28 of 31 shots in the loss.

2. TURNING POINT
The final two minutes of the second period turned the tide in this one… After surrendering the first goal of the night and their lead narrowed to 3-1, the Flyers faced a 5-on-3 power play for 1:44 from an offensively talented Hawks team. The Flyers PK units shut them down allowing just one shot on goal in that span. In addition to the kill, Elliott came up with a great save on Brandon Saad on a breakaway in the final minute of the second period. 

3. THREE STARS

1. Claude Giroux: Had a goal and two assists for a three-point night for his fifth multi-point game of the season and won eight of 10 face-offs.Video: CHI@PHI: Giroux blasts it by Crawford for early lead
 
2. Jakub Voracek: Matched Giroux for a three-point night and recorded his eighth multi-point game of the year to take over sole possession of the Flyers scoring lead with 21 points.

3. Brian Elliott: Stopped 38 of 39 shots for his sixth win of the year (6-3-1) and most saves as a Flyer.Video: Hear from the top line following 3-1 win over CHI

4. STATS & STORYLINES

TOP LINE LEADING
The Flyers top line factored into all three goals and combined for seven points (3g-4a) in the game… The trio now has combined for 60 points and ranks in the Top 10 of NHL scoring with Voracek leading the way tied for third with 21 points and second in the assist column (17).

Sean Couturier scored his 10th goal of the season in his 16th game… Last season he didn't reach his 10th goal until his 48th game last season.Video: CHI@PHI: Couturier finishes pretty feed from Giroux

With 20 points in 16 games, Claude Giroux is off to his best start since 2014-15 when he had 20 points in 15 games.

HAGG GIVING HITS
Robert Hagg led both teams in the game with five recorded hits… He now leads all rookies with 53 hits through 16 games, which also ranks fifth among all players in the NHL… The rookie d-man also has 25 blocked shots, which ranks second among all rookies.

Hagg has played alongside Ivan Provorov since his regular defensive partner Andrew MacDonald has gone down with injuries.

ELLIOTT GETS HIS REVENGE
Brian Elliott avenged a loss to the Blackhawks nine days earlier in which he turned in a 32-save performance… Elliott stopped every shot he saw in the first period (12) and a third period in which Chicago fired 16 shots in total on him to turn aside 38 of 39… The win also marked the most saves Elliott has made against the Blackhawks in a regular season game in his career.Video: CHI@PHI: Elliott makes glove save on Panik's backhand

MAKE THAT 14
The Flyers extended their home-winning streak against the Blackhawks to an incredible 14 straight games… Their last loss, ironically, came 21-years ago to this day - Nov. 9, 1996… During the 21-year streak, the Flyers have now out-scored Chicago, 46 to 21… Overall the Flyers have a home record of 43-16-11-0… They split the season series with Chicago for the second straight year.

WORTH NOTING
Jori Lehtera was 88 percent on face-offs tonight, gong 7-for-8… Ivan Provorov played 21:19 after averaging 28:03 over the last five games…  Radko Gudas returned to the lineup for the first time since departing the last game against Chicago on Nov. 1. He played 17:25 and had four shot attempts, two hits and a blocked shot.

5. THEY SAID ITVideo: Elliott on 3-1 victory over ChicagoVideo: Hakstol on 3-1 win over CHI

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